December 27, 2013

Silk Scarves

I hope everyone is enjoying some relaxing times with family and friends. All three of our grown kids are here and we really enjoy having them all together. We've been playing a lot of cards, ping pong, bananagrams and going for walks on the beach. I was quite surprised to find ten pieces of beach glass the other day. The high surf must be responsible for churning it up because it's usually hard to find.

Here are two hand dyed silk scarves that I recently finished. If you're interested in purchasing one, email me or click here to go to my Etsy shop.

Silk Crepe de Chine-SC3 (red, green, yellow, blue purple)

Silk Crepe de Chine-SC10 (blue, fuchsia, yellow, green)

December 20, 2013

Scrappy Rag Quilt

I've been trying to finish up projects that have been hanging around my studio way too long. This one is for my grand niece, Julia. When she was five years old, I made her a flannel rag quilt with raveled seams. Now that she is nine, she informed me that it was too small for her. I told her to pick out the flannel she liked from my stash and I would make her another quilt. Of course, she loved all the fabric, so she is getting another scrappy quilt. She spent quite a bit of time arranging the squares.

I labeled everything so that it would go together exactly as she envisioned and now I'm sewing it all together. This may be larger than anything I've ever finished. Did you notice I used the word finished?

If you are a book lover and appreciate great photography, you should check out this book. It really is one of the most spectacular books I've seen in a long time.

This is one of the many photos from the book. It looks like one of my hand dyed fabrics. Every page is filled with amazing images and great information about the world.

I won one of the gift baskets at the guild Christmas raffle. It had a lot of fat quarters, a pattern, book and a yo-yo maker. Most of it doesn't match my style so I'm not quite sure what I'm going to do with it yet.

December 18, 2013

Knitting Projects

Yay! I finished my Russian Wedding Band Cowl, however, mine has two loops instead of three like the pattern suggests. I'm really happy with the way it turned out. The loopy yarn adds a lot of interest.

The knitting group I meet with once a month is called "Loose Threads". I really joined the group because I like the women, not because I liked to knit. I used to bring a variety of things to work on, but the last few months I've become addicted on knitting. They are so talented and make such beautiful items . . . I want to make them too. Lucky for me, they are really patient and willing to share.

Katie taught me how to knit short rows so I could make this helix scarf. I tried to flatten the scarf out a bit  to show how it ruffles on each side of the center spine. I'm using a 75% Supersocke 100 wool and #3 needles. It'll probably take me 6 months to finish the scarf but I'm sure I'll love it when it's finished.

Here's a close up showing how the scarf naturally twists. Aren't the colors gorgeous?

December 17, 2013

Fantastic Sunset

After a really cold week and several nights of frost, mother nature delivered some warm weather and a beautiful sunset.

 I'm taking these photos from the pier in Goleta Beach. Campus Point is the whole area of land that extends into the ocean in the background. That is where the campus of UCSB is located. It's a great location for a college. Whenever I see clouds like this, I know it's going to be a great sunset.

The colors gradually begin to shift, but within five minutes, the change is dramatic.

I took this photo after the sun had completely set using a long exposure.

 It was completely dark when I shot this photo of the campus lights. It's a fun little experiment that I continue to play with whenever I have my camera with me after it gets dark.

December 11, 2013

SB Art Association Exhibit

I'm happy to announce that I was recently juried into the Santa Barbara Art Association. My first exhibit with them is taking place during the month of December at the Santa Barbara Library in all three galleries.
There are over 300 members in the association and there are plenty of mixed media artists, but as far as I know, there aren't any other fiber artists like me. That could be good or bad, I'm not sure . . . time will tell. The three pieces shown below are on exhibit now through December 30, 2013. Stop by and see the show if you're in town.

Winter Wonderland, 13 x 20"

Swept Away, 11x 14"

Looking Up, 30 x 34"

Looking Up is one of my latest pieces to be completed. The inspiration for this piece was the skylights in the Santa Clarita convention center. I was fascinated with the structure and took a lot of photographs.  I manipulated the photos in Photoshop until I was pleased with the colors and composition and then printed them onto fabric. Then I took it one step further and made my own interpretation of the structure using my hand dyed fabric. A second top in the series is completed and is waiting to be quilted.

December 8, 2013

Where did November Go?

I can't believe how quick the time is flying by. As I get older, the time between Halloween and Christmas seems to get shorter every year. Of course, it was quite the opposite when I was a child. I'm sure it was the same for you too.

This year, I was really fortunate to have a wonderful group of friends and family at my home for Thanksgiving. I hope that all of you also had a lovely day. It's been an amazing year for me both creatively and physically. Regaining my vision was life changing. After the surgery, I made a major change in my life. I began eating healthy and exercising A LOT. It was not easy. . . every muscle in my body screamed loud and often. But, I've lost 50 pounds and I feel so much better. I'm really grateful that I was able to dig deep and find the strength to stick with it. If you're going though this and need some encouragement, let me know. I'll be your #1 fan.

Here's a little quilt that I started quite a while ago in a workshop with Esterita Austin. My sister-in-law saw it in my studio and fell in love with it, so I finished it for her.

This is the back view, showing the quilting through the top and batting. Once it was quilted, I added a backing using the pillowcase technique.

Here's the front of the quilt. I added the shadows in the doorway using 2 colors of tulle. I think the finished size is around 20 x 22".

A good friend hasn't been feeling well lately, so we gifted her with a pretty scarf from Houston. Of course, I had to have some fun decorating the gift bag. 

I screen-printed both designs onto the bag using the water soluble crayons, extender and the screens shown. The screen of the wild child is a thermofax and the random shape screen was made using a sheer curtain and blue glue as a resist. Surprisingly, these screens will last for several printing sessions if you clean them using cold water.

Let me know if you have any questions, I'm happy to share.